child to narrate is a great way to see how
much he understands.
Copying a brief literature passage
teaches a child to be a careful observer,
proofreading is important; this can also
extra careful about spelling and possibly rely on memory (unless you read the
passage slowly and repeat phrases several
times). These great methods—narration,
were;first;in-troduced by education pioneer, Charlotte
their website at www.homeschoolhigh
lights.com for more information.
After these early writing stages have
to begin. Introduce or maintain gram-mar;and;spelling;skills;while;also;requir-ing your child to write at least once or
and have him write something about it.
If he has an active imagination, but just
needs a little help, introduce him to Story
experience: my son, who was a reluctant
reader and writer, actually really enjoyed
this program. As the title suggests, the
student is given the beginning of a story.
if you notice that your child is still re-luctant;to;read;and;write,;don’t;give;up!
Reluctant children need to be prodded;
During middle school, or sooner if
your child is able, teach him how to
structure a well-written paragraph. This
will lay the foundation for essay writing,
which must be mastered in high school.
Explain that a paragraph consists of a
group of sentences that belong together:
about (the topic sentence), and the re-
maining sentences support it. Your child
should be writing frequently (at least
mal) while he masters this concept. Once
he has, he will be ready to learn how to
is something all high school graduates
should be able to do well and is a basic re-
quirement for college writing. Some par-
to teach college preparatory writing. If
this is the case, it is advisable to get help
at this stage, if not sooner.
Finally, the connection between reading
and writing cannot be overestimated.
Reading good literature will attune your
child to the effective and sometimes
beautiful use of language. Over time, this
exposure will positively affect his writ-
ing. In addition, good literature gives the
reader ideas, which lead to more sub-
Besides teaching my own children,
for years I have taught writing to home-schooled teens, and I can always tell who
the readers are by the way that they write.
and far fewer mechanical problems,
such as fragments and run-on sentences.
Thus, it is of utmost importance that you
require your children to always be in the
be in addition to—not in place of—good
literature.;You;can;find;some;great;sug-gestions at www.classical-homeschool
Nancy Doran is a mother of seven and has
homeschooled since 1992. She is a writer
and editor whose work has appeared in An
and The;Livingston;Parent;Journal. In addition, she tutors high school students in
writing and edits college application essays
for Schollegiate College Advisors. Besides
writing and editing, she enjoys knitting and
making whole wheat bread from freshly
ground organic wheat berries. You can find
more of her writing at www.nancygillard
. . . Require your
children to always be
with literary value.